Kies op maat

Inloggen Menu

New Materials and Digital Production

In the Minor 'Digital Production and New Materials' you will explore the possibilities of rethinking and altering the characteristics and performance of existing materials and/or their applications, and you will investigate innovative means of production to design and make entirely new material compositions and/or applications. In this research, you will learn and explore how these new materials can encourage more sustainable design & production solutions, leading to new business models for a circular economy, and/or other ways of addressing contemporary societal challenges.

The Minor is organized in 4 parallel lines of research (which are all integrated within the development of a final material/product prototype): 

1. Material Research

Through a series of expert lectures and practical assignments, you will learn how to test, describe and determine the physical characteristics and properties of materials, with their weaknesses and strengths. In this process you will also undertake literature research within the field of New Materials.

Finally, you will also learn how to perform a SWOT Analysis to assess if the characteristics of your new material can provide an advantage for a specific market or field of application. 

2. Digital Production

By directly engaging with computational design processes and using the digital production equipment present at school (Laser cutters, CNC Mills, 3D Printers and Industrial robotic arm with various end-effectors) you will learn how to alter the characteristics and performance of materials. These alterations may constitute a critical step in the process of making a new material, or be fundamental for adjusting its properties once it has been made. Advanced digital production processes will also be investigated to create entirely new material compositions, which characteristics can be controlled and customized with specific technology (i.e. custom end-effectors for the robot) and data.

3. Business Modelling

To explore the potential field(s) of application of your material and market your product(s), being in touch with the stakeholders of the value-chain is indispensable. Involving parties such as material suppliers, producers, potential customers and other is thus critical and necessary. In this line, you will learn to determine which parties are important and make direct contact with them, with the objective to develop a successful business model for your product. To culminate this research, you will draw and present a specific business plan.

4. Design

By understanding the intrinsic properties of your material(s), your capacity to adjust them with digital production means, and the most suitable field/market of application of your material solution, you will develop a specific design application that constitutes a 'proof-of-concept' of this integration. The design process will involve exploring different concepts, as well as developing and testing various physical prototypes. The final product will be presented at 1:1 scale in a public setting (exhibition or other) with an explicit description / explanation on how it (directly or indirectly) addresses contemporary societal challenges.

The Minor will include lectures by invited guests and excursions to related companies, organizations or professional events.


After this minor you can:

  • Elaborate an integrated design process, which involves innovative material testing, advanced production technologies and sustainable business modelling;
  • Learn how to work with and integrate multi-disciplinary knowledge from different educational areas;
  • Integrate this knowledge in a realistic application of your specific material solution;
  • Explore digital production methods to customize your material solution(s), such that you can creatively widen their field of application and/or market opportunities;
  • Format a realistic and viable business plan for a specific product or application;
  • Include your results in a database (so they can be further explored by other students and/or researchers in the future);
  • Collect and edit your findings in a professional report, which can be shared with stakeholders;
  • Put together a professional portfolio of the final group work, highlighting your personal contribution to the development process and final outcome, which can be presented to future employers.

Present and defend your integrated design process and final prototype(s) in a public setting.
Connect professions.

Aanvullende informatie

Questions about the minor?
Contact Erno Langenberg,

Questions about the Kies Op Maat procedure?
Contact onderwijsbureau Faculteit Techniek, with subject 'minor Techniek'.

Applications will be processed in the order of receipt of signed learning agreements.


‚ÄčThe minor is meant for 3rd and/or 4th year students of the entire HvA, but also for external (international) students.  The students must have a fascination in production through digital means and materials. They are able to and want to work interdisciplinary and collaborate. The students have experience in organizing their own wor as well as organizing project work. They must have an investigative attitude combined with a great curiosity. They can interpret the research area sufficiently and correctly and are able to explain their research path based on arguments. The students can acquire relevant information from a diversity of (academic) sources at a sufficient level.  The communication skills of the students are on HBO 3 level. The students must be sufficiently reflective with regard to their work and acting. He/she deliberately relates to his/her study, his/her discipline and the disciplines of the others.


Assignment, Report, Material samples and product prototype(s), Making-of compilation videos.

30 ECTS credits

The final grade is an average of 5 parts:

  • 4 distinct grades for the student's development on the 4 knowledge lines (pass or fail);
  • 1 integrated grade on the final result(s).

In case of insufficient integrated grade, the student can present additional work based on specific improvement points indicated by the lecturers of the various knowledge lines.

If a student fails to successfully complete the minor in the period in which she took the minor it is possible to finalize the minor in a following period in which the minor is given.

If a minor is no longer offered or in case the minor is rewritten, the degree programme will offer students a further two opportunities to finalize this minor in the following year.


To be defined during the program and will be handed to students in coordination with the courses.


This minor will involve 3 forms of courses:

  1. seated theoretical lectures or invited guests presentations;
  2. active testing time at the laboratories (for material and digital production research);
  3. participative coaching sessions for material, production, and design integration.

The planning and location(s) of the courses and lab times will be made available at the start of the Minor. Anyhow the students are expected to work on the program during 40 hours a week, 20 weeks.